► Right to Work Laws are BS Print E-mail

Right to Work Laws are BS 


So-called “right-to-work” laws prohibit a union from requiring membership and payment of union dues as a condition of employment, either before or after hiring.


In truth, the laws are a ploy by GOP conservatives to destroy unions so that their corporate handlers can pay less in wages and benefits. Put simply, the only winners in this scam are the Republican Party and their business handlers.


In the early 1960s I was a union steward at a factory in Toledo, Ohio that was represented by the Teamsters Union. I have also been a businessman that had to hire union contractors to build a 375 seat restaurant in the Toledo area. Therefore, I’m intimately aware of what a union can or cannot do in support of its members.


The idea that someone can be hired at a UAW represented auto plant and opt to not join the union for the purpose of avoiding the payment of dues is absurd. Even more absurd is the fact that such a person receives all of the benefits the union negotiates for dues-paying members.


If such a law was in place when I was a union steward and a non-paying dues employee came to me with a valid grievance involving a foreman, I would have immediately told him that I can’t represent you since you’re not a member of the union.


As a union steward I was involved in negotiating a contract wherein we asked for an increase in our hourly rate and for other benefits. If there were non-paying dues employees at the plant, I would have specifically advised the company negotiators that those employees were to be excluded from any benefits resulting from the new contract.


To suggest that a non-paying dues member is entitled to all of the benefits that are enjoyed by a paying member doesn’t pass the involuntary laugh test. It would be the equivalent of union-dues paying professors at the University of California at Santa Cruz having a union contract that pays 75% of the $475 green fees at Pebble Beach as a negotiated benefit. Under the right-to-work BS, non-paying dues member would also enjoy the union negotiated discount.


This BS law gives a new meaning to “getting something for nothing.”


The union bosses at the UAW, et al. should immediately instate a rule prohibiting union stewards from any representation of any kind regarding non-pay dues employees. This would include refusing representation when the company fires a non-union employee.


And lastly, if it wasn’t for the Unions there wouldn’t be a 40-hour-work week, paid vacations, heath insurance, pensions, and/or paid sick and holiday pay. 

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